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NHL Drops The Ball With Simmonds

In case you missed it, Wayne Simmonds was not given a suspension for screaming a homophobic slur at Sean Avery during Monday night’s preseason game.  Apparently, Simmonds “forgot” what he said immediately after the game, but then somehow remembered during his disciplinary hearing on Tuesday.  When he “remembered”, he said he did not use a slur at all.  In fact, he was just asking Avery if he wanted to get some ice cream with him after the game.  Nice gesture, right?

So, the NHL listened to Simmonds, and decided he was right, and issued no suspension for the winger.  After all, it was just him asking Avery to get ice cream and discuss their difference.  But alas, there is video proof of this:

Funny how the refs say they didn’t hear anything, but there’s a zebra who goes and talks to him just one second after Simmonds ends his rant.  Maybe he whispered it?

The NHL dropped the ball on this one.  How can you possibly say that nothing happened?  I mean…come on…really?  Which blind guy reviewed this? Kobe Bryant got fined $100,000 for using the same slur, and Simmonds got nothing even remotely close.

But here’s the kicker: I’m willing to bet my savings account that if this were directed at anyone other than Avery, there would have been a huge fine and suspension.  But because it’s Avery, and his reputation precedes him, there was no penalty.  Amazing how the off-ice decisions mirror the on-ice decisions.  But that’s a story for a different day.

Listen, Avery is no angel. He has said and done way too many questionable things to get the benefit of the doubt.  However, this doesn’t even need the benefit of the doubt, this is clear-cut.  This isn’t about Avery, this is about the NHL essentially telling the world that you can’t have any discrimination for race, but discrimination for homophobia is just A-OK.  They should be one in the same.  Both are egregious acts of intolerance and ignorance, and should be punished the same way.

Good job dropping the ball, Colin Campbell. You just undid everything that Brendan Shanaban did in the past week with one poor decision.

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  • Unbelieveable. The NHL apparently doesn’t hold themselves to the same standards as other sports leagues. That’s very disappointing.

    The ref heard it, but you’re right, because it was directed at Avery, it doesn’t matter.

  • This is no different than the hand gesture the Islander player made. Why was Colin Campbell making the decision instead of Shanahan?

    • Based on his idiotic ruling, he’d probably try to hire a BLIND lip reader for Avery incidents such as this one. One stupid decision leads to another, and moron Colie will probably prove this right.

  • It is easy to see why there was nothing done Simmonds because Sean Avery alleged the slur was said. There is slot of colorful language used in NHL game. Avery is the mostnhated man in hockey. Just listening yesterday to the power play on the NHL station they dismissed the whole thing because Avery said it happened. I think if torts give Avery a shot this season with Gabby and Richards hen will have great year. We all know so Wolskiwill last on the first line for a month at most

  • I am disappointed in this as well. A more so because of the bullshit they are trying to feed us. Everyone can see what he said. The ref was close enough, he didn’t know what he said after the game but then he knows exactly what he didn’t say.

    I was really hoping that it being Avery it would have no impact. I’m not convinced in the end it did. Maybe they just didnt want to open that door since I bet that word is used a lot.

    But the hypocrisy sticks something awful. How can you suspend someone (not just a fine) because of a comment they said about an ex-girlfriend and not this? If the word that was uttered was the N-word and directed at Simmonds you thing the result would be the same? And really, if it were Avery that said it what do you think would be the outcome.

    Shame on the NHL with this bullshit.

  • Hey, it’s Avery and it’s Colin Campbell. What does anyone expect? Imagine if Avery had said it. He would be suspended without a doubt. Campbell has had it in for the Rangers since he was fired. So happy that Shanahan is now handling suspensions but I also don’t understand why Campbell was in charge for this one. Again demonstrates how the NHL is not up to par with other pro sports.

  • Come on, it’s simple. Campbell handled this one so there would be no backlash on Shanny..On top of that, Simmonds basically turned the other cheek on the banana incident, so the NHL looking the other way in regards to his FF comment could be interpreted as payback for Simmonds not playing the race card and bringing lawsuits against the league, the arena, owners etc. Is it right ? Hell no. It could also being like someone else mentioned…that word as well as everything else in the proverbial book is used on the ice, once you open up that door, there’s no turning back.

  • Lets be real everyone, these “homophobic slurs” are used every day in all sports; professional & down to the high school level (and the NHL12 video game level). Don’t get me wrong, I don’t support the use of that word or any other racial/homophobic slur. Nonetheless, If we fined & suspended every player in professional sports around the globe for what Simmonds did, the benches would be empty and some guys would be making serious bank off of those fines. Finally, put yourself into the perspective of an emotional, testosterone filled player and just think for a moment if it’s fair to hold them to this author’s standards.

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